Throughout my life I have struggled with my weight, my body and the famous struggle of trying to find inner peace with who I am. Let’s face it, there are a lot of awesome people out there and they rarely know it! It took me a while to accept the fact that all I considered beautiful was created by society and those standards could be diminished if I choose to destroy them and to this day I still fight to tell myself that society is to blame for my insecurities. It took me a while to get angry and even longer to use that anger for change. And so when I was scrolling down my Facebook (gotta conform in some way, right?) and came across this picture I became quickly enraged.
Hey, I am all for helping individuals realize how society can hit us all with their bullshit beauty ideals and expectations and for letting them know that metaphorically giving society the finger (or maybe not metaphorically) is really liberating. However, can we all just take a minute and think about what this is truly promoting? What is the true message being sent? To me it is the same ol’ message we have all seen since we turned on a TV or flipped through a magazine: “one type of body is better than another!” And to that I must metaphorically stick up my middle finger.
If we all (I hope we all are in this together) are trying to convey the message that it is society who constructs standards for beauty and they really do not exist, then we must all send the same message: all people, bodies, shapes, colors are accepted and are equal in beauty and otherwise. This picture received millions of “likes” and “shares” because at the surface it seems like a progressive message telling people who are not “super skinny” that they are actually “hotter”, yet this is being done by saying the skinny body is inferior. Quite counter-progressive if you ask me. This is the classic lesson taught to children: don’t make yourself (or others) feel better by putting others down. Even with good intentions, I believe this to be quite detrimental to our fight against societal expectations; it only empowers and encourages their ultimate goal of having people feel bad or insecure about their bodies and about themselves.
How about just the simple complete acceptance of all people and their bodies, no matter what they may be? Now that may be the ultimate middle finger we can give to society. Can’t say you’re not tempted.